The more the Los Angeles Angels and Boston Red Sox played Wednesday night, the more the crowd thinned at Fenway Park. By at least one reporter's count, there were no more than 11 fans in the bleachers when the end came at 2:45 a.m. ET
Can you blame the departed? The ballpark had stopped selling beer hours before and the free coffee and hot chocolate distributed by owners John Henry and Tom Werner only went so far in convincing fans to stick around after a 2 1/2-hour rain delay — and through five hours of actual playing time.
But by the time the Angels won 5-3 in 13 innings, there were enough quirky occurrences for the faithful folks to head home with a whole stockpile of stories.
The best kooky moment? To honor Kevin Youkilis(notes) for his 12th inning at-bat, the remaining Red Sox fans showed off their vocal chops by singing Biz Markie's infamously off-key classic, "Just A Friend."
Boston's announcers act oblivious, though it has been Youkilis' walk-up song. The fans appeared to alter the lyrics a bit:
OH, BABY, 'YOUK!' You got what I need
But you say he's just a friend
You say he's just a friend
OH, BABY, 'YOUK!'
Even a New York Yankees fan has to love it.
• The Red Sox nearly won after Youkilis presumably used inspiration from the song to drive the ball high off the Green Monster, but Marco Scutaro(notes) was thrown out at the plate trying to score from first. Third base coach Tim Bogar seemed indecisive about sending Scutaro, who ran through a very late stop sign. Whatever, the relay was perfect.
Not as perfect was Don Orsillo's call of what he thought was going to be a home run:
"Youkilis drives it deep, and WE CAN FINALLY ALL GO ... OFF the wall ... and Scutaro is going to try to come around from first, and he is OUT AT THE PLATE."
• Thanks to Ervin Santana(notes) and Co., Boston was actually no-hit for 6 1/3 innings and trailed by two runs going to the ninth before tying the score against closer Jordan Walden(notes). The Red Sox might have won at that juncture, but for a bizarre baserunning play involving Mike Cameron(notes) and a ball hitting an umpire that could be a blog post by itself.
• And then came the pro wrestlers.
Actually, that's Angels broadcasters Victor Rojas (on the right?) and Mark Gubicza (also possibly on the right?) wearing "Rally Wrestling Masks" like ones the Angels are giving away at the "Big A" in a few days. (Thanks, Awful Announcing, for posting this.)
The rally masks ploy actually worked. After starting 0 for 6 with two strikeouts, Bobby Abreu(notes) put the Angels ahead with a two-run single in the 13th. What, you thought it was skill? Or Daisuke Matsuzawa's first career relief appearance? It was the masks!
• Check out frickin' Nomar Garciaparra(notes) duck out of the way of this wicked pissah foul ball so a female intern can take one in the chest. Wait 'til Mia sees this! Not only were fans calling for Nomah to drop the ball into the stands (he did) they wanted him to pitch, too (he declined).
And, so yeah, that happened. They'll do it all again on Thursday for a game that's scheduled to start at 1:35 p.m., less than 12 hours after everyone finally went home for the night on Wednesday.